Managing the growth of your business is a tough task. MSPs need to preserve or increase profitability, while also reinvesting back into their business. 

TechPath, Brisbane’s largest MSP, projected up to 30% revenue growth in 2020, which offered them a big opportunity in the coming year. 

With customers across Australia and New Zealand, TechPath took on the challenge of scaling up.

To get the job done, TechPath’s Service Manager Dan Rutter used Cognition360. In fact, Rutter said the tool was a massive leap forward for his process to gather data and create reports.

“We’re still early in our journey with Cognition360, but already we’re getting great bottom line benefits from increased visibility and timeliness,” he said. “Before Cognition360 I’d spend about two days each month building reports on my two most important metrics: Agreement Profitability and Staff Profitability. Now the whole process takes a couple of hours, or less.”

The old reports, put together manually, only showed Rutter where they were at the end of each month. It was just a snapshot in time. Now, Cognition360 gives them day-by-day statistics, giving them more data for decision making. 

“As a result, Agreement Profitability is up by more than ten percent compared to last year,” he said. “Staff Profitability is up by more than 12% – mostly from increased accuracy of time reporting and better tracking and realization of the work done for customers.”

Custom dashboards make working with clients is easier than ever

Rutter said Cognition360 has allowed TechPath to get reliable service and support, with any requests done within 24 hours. This has given them confidence to move onto bigger projects. Projects that give account managers a consolidated dashboard that will act as a ‘single pane of glass’ when working with clients. 

The customer dashboard will give TechPath’s account managers all the data they need right at their fingertips: 

“This is very exciting. It means we can work with our customers in a true partnership – continuously tuning their services to support their changing business needs, showing value, and strengthening our customer relationships – while at the same time increasing our bottom line profitability,” he said. 

With Cognition360, TechPath is equipped to make better business decisions as they navigate their growth in the coming years. More informed decisions lead to improved service for clients, and better bottom line results for the business itself.

As MSPs tackle new challenges in their quest to grow and sustain their business, they need the right tools for the job. Richard Fleischman and Associates, Inc (RFA) needed a ConnectWise reporting solution to get the data visibility needed to grow revenue. 

The solution they found was Cognition360.

After using Cognition360 for more than a year, it is now fully integrated into RFA’s operations. Now, the company has seen a 15% to 20% efficiency increase across the business.

RFA is a global IT, financial cloud, and cybersecurity provider to the financial services and alternative investment sectors. RFA has more than 250 people working from headquarters in New York and London.

Why do MSPs need business analysis?

Gregory Milis, Chief Technology Officer at RFA, said the company has used ConnectWise as its PSA for a very long time. They developed ad-hoc reporting, but as the business grew they needed improved reporting in their business. 

“We realized that to develop a comprehensive set of operational, financial, productivity, and project management reporting across the entire company, we would need an army of business analysts to work on it! Without proper reporting, we couldn’t manage the company very well, and we couldn’t continue to efficiently grow and expand our operations.”

Researching reporting options for ConnectWise led RFA to find Cognition360 on the ConnectWise Marketplace Partner Exchange.

‘It became quickly apparent that it’s a very comprehensive product and easy to deploy, and Coginiton360 was willing to make adjustments for our reporting requirements. The price point also made sense. So, we decided to go ahead.”

Cognition360 was implemented at RFA in July 2021. Milis said the process of fully implementing it into their business was fast and simple.

Saving money and boosting productivity

Within a year, RFA had significant financial and productivity gains. Milis said that if they had to build the same type of reporting themselves, it would have cost three times as much just on labor.

The major benefit they’ve seen is the speed of reporting, covering a wide range of KPIs and metrics. 

“For example, our support teams rely on the productivity reporting and utilization reporting,” he said. “This reporting drives not just the KPIs for tech utilization but also drives our hiring decisions, and our expansion decisions. Cognition360 reporting is very deeply integrated into the company’s operations.”

Increased efficiency business-wide

RFA is using Cognition360 reporting to identify the metrics it needs to increase efficiencies across the business.

If the manager or director of a department requests specific information, they rely on Cognition360 reporting to validate the request. RFA uses the insights that Cognition360 surfaces to optimize their business efficiency.

According to Milis, RFA relies on Cognition360 reporting to see the statistics and identify the top five service ticket types. With those reports, they focus on the tasks these tickets cover to see how they can get them done quickly with automation. 

RFA has seen at least a 15% to 20% benefit in increasing efficiency across the business, Milis said.

“We’re very happy – it’s a really helpful tool. Every department uses some reporting function of Cognition360. It gives us very clear visibility into a wide range of operational parameters. Cognition360 was a good win for us.”

Quick, professional support

Cognition 360 support is always there when MSPs need it. Milis said interactions with their dedicated project manager were very helpful in onboarding the process.

“We haven’t experienced any issues – it just works,” he said. “Since the initial onboarding and work on getting the data right, we haven’t needed to go to Cognition360 much for support, but when we have, the response is always good – very quick, very professional, and our requests are resolved promptly.

“We’re very happy – it’s a really helpful tool. Cognition360 was a good win for us.”

Accessing ConnectWise data for reporting can be a time consuming process for MSPs. Staff can spend days collecting the right data for analysis and decision making. 

But for technology provider Cinos, implementing Cognition360 for reporting in July 2022 has been a game changer.

Cognition360 has enabled them to access ConnectWise data quickly and easily at a level they had previously been unable to reach. Customized Procurement and Commission Reports have helped Cinos to save time, money, and resources. Increasing efficiency and productivity across the business.

Founded in 2007, Cinos specializes in delivering managed services to a global marketplace. With more than 130 employees, Cinos has headquarters and offices in the UK, Europe, North America, and Asia.

A solution to reporting in ConnectWise

Managing Director Johanna Guest said Cinos began using ConnectWise in 2019, but needed a solution to create reports. 

“Everything in it is brilliant, until it comes to reporting – it is too complex around the Financials,” she said. “Because it has procedures that aren’t data sets, we couldn’t get to the data we needed. We’re a projects-based company, we need to know where we are with our projects.”

Guest said an average project is over £100,000, so they use phased billing. They just couldn’t easily get to the financials for these projects in ConnectWise.

“I was saying to our accounts manager, ‘Surely we are not the only company who needs this info that you can’t get us!’”

In ConnectWise, you can either bill when a project is completed, or leave it in the invoicing queue. But it doesn’t tell you what you can bill, she said.  

“So, I could have a ticket with a hundred grands-worth of products on it, but I could only get a workflow notification if all the products had been picked and shipped.”

Guest went hunting for a solution and found Cognition360.

Enabling easy access to financials

Guest needed to be able to easily access the financials at any moment to know exactly what products have been delivered for each project. As well as how much could be billed on that day based on the payment profile.

Cognition360 customized the Procurement Report for Cinos, adding a ‘payment terms’ field. This enables them to pick products to be invoiced based on the payment profile of the project.

“I can run a report, hand it to somebody who is not an accounts person – at all – and he can export that Power BI, he knows how to do a pivot table, how to filter on the payment terms and because of the report you’ve built us, he then knows what projects to go into and bill,” she said.

“Just to put it into perspective, today, in the space of an hour, we’ve been able to go straight into the projects and bill £260,000. That is literally off the Cognition360 Procurement Report.”

Guest said that would have taken ‘ages’ to get that done alone. 

There was no way in ConnectWise to assign a payment profile to a project, short of waiting for a project to close. Finding the required information meant drilling down manually into 200-plus projects in ConnectWise.

Without Cognition360, it was a time-consuming process that was also vulnerable to human error. Guest said the manual process negatively impacted the bottom line.

“Cognition360 manages to get into all the places ConnectWise can’t – and that’s the beauty of it. You’re able to pull that data out,” she said.

They also have a quicker turnaround on invoices because she can get invoices out sooner, typically the same day.

Simplified commission reporting

No matter what currency the sales team is selling in, they see their commission in GBP – and this is visible to them in their in-field app as well. And when the accounts team invoices, everything is converted to GBP.

“Also, we were having to literally send the sales team individual statements. So, you’d have your big report; you would then go through, check all the currency ones – which you couldn’t go into a product level; then we would have to filter it by the salesperson name, copy that onto a separate spreadsheet, then go and send it to them.”

Now that the whole process has been simplified with Cognition360, Guest has hours of her time back.

“I’m telling everyone about Cognition360 – you guys are phenomenal. I just want to save people from the ConnectWise reporting hell. I’m on a mission!”

Reclaiming time, money, and sanity

Pre-Cognition360, Guest estimates she was working at least 80 hours a week. Before work and on weekends, she got reports done and invoices out while still doing her full-time job.

Implementing Cognition360 has saved Cinos time, money, and resources. Now, Guest has reclaimed her weekends and mornings.

“You’ve nearly given me my life back, which is amazing,” she said.

Guest and the Cinos team will now explore the many other reports available in Cognition360.

Next up is the Work in Progress Report that will further simplify their workload and save even more time. The report surfaces the information she needs to easily create a Work in Progress Journal.

“That has taken me the best part of two years to get out of ConnectWise – and I couldn’t do it. I ended up, every month, doing five different reports, then I’d have to put it into Excel, and play around with it before I could do my Journal,” she said.

“We haven’t even touched on the other reports yet – I’ve got a feeling it’s going to definitely not only save time but save the company money as well.”

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